Genre: YA Contemporary
Title: Playing Defense
Author: Cate Cameron
Release Date: 14 March 2016
Previous Book in the Series: Center Ice
Sixteen-year-old Claudia Waring has never kissed a boy. Never been popular. Never been to a hockey game. All that’s about to change. Assigned to tutor Chris Winslow, a prank-loving, gorgeous hockey player, Claudia’s perfectly planned life immediately veers off course. And she kind of likes it. But as fun as Chris is, she knows she’ll never fit in his world.
After his latest prank lands him in hot water, Chris has to get serious about school or lose hockey. Not an easy thing for someone as carefree as the defenseman. The biggest problem, though, is how much he wants to help his cute, buttoned-up tutor loosen up a little. But while confidence has never been a problem for him, around Claudia, Chris is all nerves. Why would a girl as smart as her ever fall for a jock like him?
What I Liked:
The characters in this book are so awesome. I wish that I had friends like them when I was a teenager. Claudia was super relatable to me, because she’s a shy nerd who wants to be more fun and outgoing. She has moments of attitude and adventure, but she also has moments where she freaks out and retreats into herself. That’s me. Sometimes I’m adventurous and brave and extroverted, but other times I’m very uncomfortable and shy and would rather go unnoticed. I loved seeing a character like this, because I feel that often characters are either one extreme or the other, either extremely extroverted or extremely introverted.
Chris might be one of my favorite romantic leads of all time. I’m not usual the type to swoon over fictional characters, or talk about my fictional crushes, but if I did? I would be talking about Chris Winslow 24/7. He’s smart and funny and charming and clever and sweet and…I think you get the idea. And he and Claudia have such a sweet romance. They’re so cute together!
What I Didn’t:
Claudia’s mom is the worst. I’ve come across characters like her before (most recently in Damage Control by Jae) and they always make me so angry! And Claudia’s mom never gives any inkling that she may change her thinking or realize that Claudia needs to make her own decisions (and mistakes). Ugh!
This book is the absolute cutest. I enjoyed the first book in the series, but this one is even better! I loved the characters, and I liked that the storyline was more simple and straight-forward than in book 1. I also appreciated that Karen and Tyler, the couple from the last book, played such a prominent role in the story, especially Karen. It was fun to see Karen being more outgoing, nice, and friendly. I would definitely recommend this series to anyone who likes YA or hockey romances.
My Rating: 4/5